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After leading the Denver Nuggets to a team-record 57 wins, George Karl is the recipient of the Red Auerbach Trophy as the 2012-13 NBA Coach of the Year, the league announced today.

Karl, who guided the Nuggets to the No. 3 seed in the Western Conference, joins Doug Moe as the only coaches in franchise history to win the award. It also is the first time Karl has received the honor in his 25 NBA seasons.

Karl totaled 404 points, including 62 first-place votes, from a panel of 121 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Coaches were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote. The award was tabulated by the independent accounting firm of Ernst & Young LLP.

“I am honored and energized to represent coaching and be their ambassador as coach of the year and continue to symbolize the great coaching there is in the NBA,” Karl said. “There are probably seven or eight guys who are deserving of it and another 10 or 15 other coaches who have done a great job and aren’t getting any recognition.”

That last sentence is pretty much the definition of the Coach of the Year award — seven or eight guys could have won it and there are a bunch more who also did great jobs. And that’s why complaining about the choice is usually pretty futile. Yeah, maybe George Karl isn’t your choice for Coach of the Year, but the Nuggets did set a franchise record for wins, rattled off a 15-game winning streak and looked the part of a serious dark horse title contender for a good part of the season before suffering injuries to three of their most important players. Not to mention, George Karl is the active leader in career wins and had never won Coach of the Year, which counts for a lot more than you’d think.

This is the first award for any Denver Nugget since Marcus Camby’s 2006-07 Defensive Player of the Year, so that’s a pretty cool thing for Denver fans, who I am sure will love seeing their team’s coach accept this award at a press conference because the Nuggets have already been eliminated from the playoffs in a series where many people think Karl was outcoached. That stuff obviously doesn’t matter for a regular season award, but it’s still going to be kind of awkward. But at least Denver fans can take solace in knowing that the last time something like this happened — when Dirk Nowitzki accepted his 2007 MVP after the Mavericks were upset by the Warriors — that team ended up winning a title a few seasons later.

So basically, Nuggets in 2017. You heard it here first.